The Effects of Petroleum and Exhaust Fumes on Haematological Parameters of Motor Mechanics in Owerri Metropolis

Onuoha Moses, Godfrey Kingsley Okonkwo, Iwuji Joy Chidinma, Nwakulite Arvin

Abstract


Considering the increase in the occupational exposure of the petroleum and its products in view of its wide use in Nigeria society, the possibility of inhalation of its fumes during its utilization and inhalation of the exhaust gases by motor mechanics, the effect of petroleum and automobile exhaust fumes on haematological parameters were assessed in forty motor mechanics in Owerri metropolis Imo State. The years of work duration of the test groups (motor mechanics) all males were between 1- 10 years and above and they are divided into three groups; group 1 (1-4 years work duration), group 2 (5-10 years work duration) and group 3 (above 10 years work duration) while twenty healthy and non-motor mechanics were included as control subjects. Each blood sample were analyzed for haemoglobin (Hb), packed cell volume (pcv) and white blood cell count (wbc) total and differential count using standard haematological methods. In group 1 (1-4 years), the study illustrated a significant decrease (p<0.05) in hemoglobin (Hb), packed cell volume (pcv) and white blood cell count (wbc) values (Hb 12.9±0.84 g/dl, Pcv 36.6±3.7%, wbc 3.8 ±0.48x109 /l) with a non-significant difference (p>0.05) in platelets, neutrophil and lymphocyte values (platelets 106 ±19.99, neutrophil 1.52±0.32, lymphocyte 2.00± 0.51x109/l) when compare with the control groups, (Hb12.9±0.84g/dl), (Pcv 36.6±3.7%), (wbc 3.8 ±0.48, platelets 106 ±19.99, neutrophil 1.52±0.32, lymphocyte 2.00± 0.51 x109 /l). In the group 2 (4-5 years) the values of Hb, pcv, wbc and eosinophil (Hb 10.6±0.72g/dl), (pcv 32.3±2.21%), (wbc 3.5 ±0.58, eosinophil 0.035±0.03 x109 /l) shows a significant decrease (p<0.05) with a resultant non-significant increase in the values of platelets, neutrophils and lymphocytes (p>0.05) (platelets 119.8 ±20.74, neutropils 1.62±0.35, lymphocytes 1.91± 0.51 x109 /l) when compared with control groups (Hb12.9±0.84g/dl),(Pcv 36.6±3.7%),(wbc 3.8 ±0.48, platelets 106 ±19.99, neutrophil 1.52±0.32, lymphocyte 2.00± 0.51, eosinophils 0.05±0.01 x109 /l). In group 3 (above 10 years), the Hb, pcv, wbc and eosinophils values (Hb 9.1±0.91g/dl), (pcv 27.8±3.15%), (wbc 2.9 ±0.43, eosinophils 0.02±0.02 x109 /l) were significantly reduced (p 14&lt;0.05)">  when compared with the control groups (Hb12.9±0.84g/dl), (Pcv 36.6±3.7%),(wbc 3.8 ±0.48, eosinophils 0.05±0.01 x109 /l), while platelets, neutrophils and lymphocyte showed no significant difference (p>0.05). It was observed that the mean values of Hb, pcv, wbc total and eosinophils count levels among all the test groups were significantly reduced (p 14&lt;0.05)">  when compared with the respective control subjects. While the mean values of neutropil and lymphocytes among all the test groups were non significantly higher (p> 0.05) when compared with the control subjects. The platelet count shows no significant difference in the result investigated in the test subject when compared with the controls (p> 0.05), except in group 3 (above 10 years work duration), where the result was significantly low (p <0.05). The result therefore suggest that inhalation of petroleum and automobile exhaust fumes may be potentially toxic, and the degree of toxicity is related to the concentration and time to which the subject were exposed and also the years of work duration.


Keywords


haemoglobin; packed cell volume; white blood cell count; platelets; neutrophils; lymphocyte; eosinophil

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